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This article is from the Encyclopedia of North Carolina edited by William S. Powell. Copyright © 2006 by the University of North Carolina Press. Used by permission of the publisher. For personal use and not for further distribution. Please submit permission requests for other use directly to the publisher.

Mont Amoena Seminary

by Lisa Brantley Kobrin, 2006

See also: Lutheran Schools of Mount Pleasant

Mont. Amoena Seminary, Mt. Pleasant, N. C. , ca 1908. Image courtesy of the North Carolina Collection. Mont Amoena Seminary in Cabarrus County was founded by Mrs. D. H. Bittle in 1859, under the name Mount Pleasant Female Seminary, as a private liberal arts academy for girls of high school age. It first consisted of one two-story frame building. The school was acquired by the North Carolina Lutheran Synod in 1869 and continued to educate both day students and boarders in fields including English, Latin, mathematics, and music. Many of its headmasters were Lutheran ministers. After the Civil War, it became popular with parents in Concord, and according to one source "was an island of culture in the difficult years" that followed the war.

In 1892 the school's name was changed to Mont Amoena Seminary, the name being the Latin equivalent of Mount Pleasant, the location of the school. The school's original multipurpose frame building was destroyed by fire in November 1911, and a new three-story brick building with white columns and modern amenities was constructed on seven acres near the old site at a cost of $30,000.

In 1927, after more than 65 years of educating young women, Mont Amoena Seminary was closed, largely because of worsening school finances and improvements in the local public schools. Several years thereafter, its male equivalent academy, Mount Pleasant Collegiate Institute, also closed its doors.


Raymond M. Bost and Jeff L. Norris, All One Body: The Story of the North Carolina Lutheran Synod, 1803-1993 (1994).

Additional Resources:

Mount Amoena Seminary, NC Highway Historical Marker L-66:

Town of Mount Pleasant:

Image Credit:

Mont. Amoena Seminary, Mt. Pleasant, N. C. , ca 1908. Image courtesy of the North Carolina Collection. Available from (accessed November 2, 2012).

Origin - location: 



Contrary to the accepted version of the founding of Mt. Pleasant Female Academy, Mrs. D. H. Bittle was not the founder. She was the first principal and was hired by a Board of Trustees who, using the model of the nearby Western Carolina Male Academy, gained the support of the NC Lutheran Synod to open a school for girls in Mt. Pleasant. Mrs. Bittle was responsible for establishing the culture of the school, but remained in her position for only about 1 year before the Civil War resulted in the suspension of classes at both academies.


Thank you for your comment. I am researching educational facilities in Mt. Pleasant in the late 1800s and early 1900s to learn more about where my maternal Barringer and Seaford ancestors attended school. Do you have references for elementary schools of that era. I know my mother and two sisters were grads of Mont Amoena. Thanks for any direction you can provide. Elizabeth


Dear Elizabeth,

Thanks for sharing your interest and question.

I am replying to you by email with a list of suggestions for resources where you may be able to compile information about schools in Mt. Pleasant during the time periods you mention.

I hope this helps and good luck with your research!

Kelly Agan, N.C. Government & Heritage Library

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